Like all good Yankees fans, the Yankees bandwagon is leading the rush to print playoff tickets because Al Leiter is the answer to all their prayers. Forget that the Red Sox are in a slump of their own making: the inconsistent starting pitching (Shaky Wakey, Rock Star Bronson, and One Inning Wonder Wade) combined with a highly flammable bullpen (Embree, Halama, et al) and an inconsistent attack (mainly due to Bellhorn and Millar inexplicably written into the lineup daily).

How to fix it? Well, that is the question of the day. For me, I will take joy from the simple phrase of “seventeen to one”. The Yankees are not going to last. The Wanger is hurt; Melky Cabrera is more Jolbert Cabrera than Miguel Cabrera; Robinson Canu is good, but he is no Alfonso Soriano (OK, maybe on defense, but that is not a good thing); Al Leiter is really not the answer, one good showing notwithstanding.

The fact of the matter is that the Red Sox are a lot better than they have played recently, the team has too much talent to continue floundering along at .500 for an extended period of time. Maybe they will not turn around like they did last season after the Nomar trade, but the team is definitely in need of something to shake them up and get them playing consistently.

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The big, pre-training camp news for the Patriots is that the dynamic duo is to stay intact. Scott Pioli has agreed to a contract extension to stay in New England for the foreseeable future. I really think this is the most important move the front office could make, more so than keeping Romeo Crennel and Charlie Weis around. Weis and Crennel had both outgrown their roles in New England: there was no way to keep them. Pioli is Director of Football Operations in everything but title. He is the other side of the Belichick coin. His role is only larger in the front office as Belichick has had to take a more hands-on role in the offense and defense with Weis and Crennel gone. Of course, a more hands-on role with the team could be beneficial, as many coaches lose touch with their players, game plans, other coaches etc. as they hand the reins to assistants and fade away until they are figureheads.

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Someone tried to tell me there were car races this weekend in New England. Something called the Busch Series and NASCAR. Nope, I have never heard of them, and do not acknowledge their existence in the Boston Sports realm. They can print the stuff in the Sporting News every week, but they will never make me read it.

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It is amazing how many people find my page looking for Hazel Mae online. She is no doubt attracting a cult following among the unbalanced and deviant viewers of NESN and news media stalkers everywhere in the area. It is amazing to read about how these people become obsessed with these newscasters and sportscasters who visit them each day through their television sets. Hey, whackos, no naked pictures of Hazel Mae here, go get your jollies somewhere else on the web, but first, click on my ads!

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